Halloween is an excuse for everyone to act like a kid, and this jiggly, wiggly, glow-in-the-dark Jell-O project is a great way to bring the whole family together.
You only need three things: a simple black light, a box of Jell-O (lime will give you the brightest hue), and a bottle of tonic water. It’s actually the tonic water that makes this experiment work. Why? Because tonic contains quinine, a bitter substance made from the bark of the cinchona tree. It was originally used as a medicine to treat malaria, but now it’s mostly used to flavor drinks. But quinine has a secret—it’s phosphorescent, which means it gives off a shimmery glow under a black light.
And you can take advantage of that by using Jell-O to create your own glow-in-the-dark edible slime. It’s the perfect project for Halloween.
Here’s what you need:
• 4 glass jars
• A package of green apple or lime Jell-O (green will glow the most brightly, but the lime flavor is a bit bitter with the quinine, so your best bet is the green apple)
• 1 liter of tonic water
• A black light
Simply make the Jell-O as directed, but substitute tonic water for the cold water. (Kids can help with this entire process—it’s just a bit of pouring and stirring.) Then divide the Jell-O between the glass jars and chill until firm. When you’re ready, gather everyone in a dimly lit room and turn on the black light to experience the spooky glow. Then dig in—the best part about this experiment is that it doubles as dessert.
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